The past few years have been incredibly kind to my heart and soul. I've met the love of my life, my career has moved quickly forward, and my family has grown. At the end of each year I can't imagine how the next year could be better... but it always finds a way.
At the same time that life has been kind to my heart and soul it's been hard on my body. Beyond just getting older in age, I've had a series of unfortunate and painful sports injuries. I've completely destroyed a shoulder requiring reconstructive surgery and lengthy rehab, while skiing in Whistler I blew a knee and then a recent cycling accident I cracked my wrists. It's safe to say I've been falling apart at the seems. Not able to climb for long periods of time or nearly how I could in the past is mentally taxing. Riding the bike had all too frequently become torturous affair of aches and pains. Getting out of bed sounds like a fresh bowl of rice crispies... Snap, crackle, pop. Let's face it, my body is getting old.
Rehab has always been great at getting me back on my feet and moving again. Just keeping up with the regular training routine wasn't working and it definitely wasn't making things better. I needed to make a change. Thinking back to what I was doing when while in the best shape of my life I asked myself "what was it that I did differently? There was a clear answer. I had gotten away from spending time on focusing balance in my mind and my body. Responsibilities and goals in life had taken me from a yoga practice.
So what was I going to do about it? For 2015 I've made a change in my regular exercise routine. I've carved out 30 minutes of every day to spend on stretching my body while relaxing my mind. There are lots of articles and videos out there about yoga for cyclists or climbers and why this is so beneficial. There are great even some great online yoga plans like "30 days of yoga with Adriene" to which I just finished my first round of. There are some sport specific yoga practices such as yoga for climbers from City Yogis here in Toronto. This means there is something for everyone and there is no excuse to fall back on.
So after 30 days how does it feel? My wrists no longer hurt or wake me up at night, I can fully bend my left knee for the first time in 2 years and my back feels strong on and off the bike. Unfortunately I realize just how much flexibility I've lost but overall I already feel so much better.
To treat myself for making it to the end of my 30 day goal I've bought a proper yoga mat to use at home and set a goal to do another 30 days.
Yoga works, who knew.